Sunday, June 27, 2010

A Night to Remember

This past weekend I have been in Boise visiting my mom. I decided to take Emma with me and she invited her best friend, Casey. The girls begged me to let them go to Roaring Springs water park yesterday. I caved, and we dropped them off when the gates opened at 11 am. They called us throughout the day to let us know that they were safe. We picked them up at 7 pm and they were both wiped out...happy, but wiped out.

Surprisingly, neither of them was too sun burned. Casey had some rosey cheeks, but other than that, they seemed okay. The girls crashed around 10:30 last night in their "beds" on the floor of my mom's living room floor. At midnight I was suddenly awakened by Emma. She came into my room and in a rather frantic voice told me that Casey was throwing up. Great. I quickly went out to the living room and yep, Emma was right...Casey was throwing up. I got her into the bathroom and near a toilet while I surveyed the damage to my mom's carpet. It was not good. I decided that I needed to wake my mom to find out where some rags and buckets were located. When I told her what was going on, we both started laughing uncontrollably. The situation really was not that funny, but we could not help ourselves.

Anyone that really knows me realizes that I have a really weak stomach and a serious gag reflex. Greg has always been the one to clean up after the kids when the stomach flu comes near our home. I just can't handle it. Well...Greg was 300 plus miles away, my mom was in no condition to clean the mess, Casey was hung over a toilet and Emma had already found my bed, so that left me. I said a silent prayer that somehow I would be able to manage and then asked my mom for a pair of latex gloves, snapped them on and then found a mask to wear to hide the smell. Oh how funny I looked cleaning up that mess. My mom and I were both laughing the entire time. I wish we had thought to pull out the camera. We finally got everything under control around 1 am. We decided that Casey had been dehydrated from being in the sun all day. We had sent water bottles with the girls, but neither of them used them. We all went back to bed and everyone slept peacefully the rest of the night. Remember the General Conference talk..."Come what may and love it..." There was nothing else we could do.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Kisses From Kai

Yesterday while I was in Primary I was sitting next to cute little Kai during singing time. His father passed away a little over a year ago in Iraq. He is 6 and very shy, but seems to have taken a liking to me. I really love this boy. Out of the blue he turned to me and said "I gave my dad a kiss for Father's Day that went all the way to heaven."

As he told me this he was smiling bigger than I have ever seen him smile. I smiled back at him and told him that his was the best gift of all. I then continued to think about what he had just said to me. I began to get teary thinking of that dear boy and what a great mom he has to make him see this day in such a positive light. We then began to sing a new song "I See The Savior Smiling". This got me even more. I love that I can go to Primary and feel the spirit just as strong, if not stronger than if I was in Relief Society or Young Women's. I have no doubt in my mind that the Savior was smiling down on Kai when he saw that pure, innocent, sweet little boy blow that kiss to heaven.


Yesterday was Father's Day. I was thinking about my dad and of some of the memories I have of him growing up. The longer I thought, the more I remembered. Here are some of my favorite things I remember about my father:

1. Going to visit him at Clatsop Community College in the basement that he transformed into the Art Department. I remember he had an office with a bed in it so he could take naps while the kiln was burning. I vividly remember one time that I was sick and my mom had to be somewhere and she took me to his office so I could sleep on his bed while he worked. I can even recall the smell of that basement...cement and art supplies mingled together. I loved that smell.

2. Whenever I would be with my dad driving he would point to various things in nature and ask me what colors I would mix to make the colors. Payne's Gray, Cadmium Yellow, Burnt Umber and it goes on and on. I still remember the names of paint colors. We would then talk about techniques to use to paint the objects.

3. Eating ice cream late at night with my dad while we watched a movie. Many times everyone would go to bed and my dad and I would stay up late watching an old movie on TV. The last few times I have been out to Astoria to visit, I was surprised to see my dad still does this. However, I did not resist when offered a bowl.

4. His laugh. My dad has the best belly laugh ever. It starts way down low and just rumbles to the top. I love laughing with my dad. I have seen him laugh so hard that he cries.

5. His knowledge. I am constantly amazed by the amount of historical knowledge he has. He was told as a young man to never even try to go to college because he would fail. Not only did he go to college, but he graduated with a Master's Degree. He can tell you anything about any time period. He also is very knowledgeable about the scriptures. He has a way of taking you back to the time period and setting the stage. He was the Gospel Doctrine teacher in his ward for almost 20 years...isn't that crazy?

6. He can tell a great story. The last few visits we have had I have realized what a great story teller he is. He really has a gift for making you visualize the entire situation.

I know my father is not perfect, but hey...neither am I. I know that he loves me and I love him too. Very much. Happy Father's Day dad. Here is to many more to come.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Rainbows and Mickey

Early this morning, Dayna sent me this picture of her gazebo in her backyard. She told me they had a thunderstorm come through Boise last night and after it passed she looked out her window and saw this awesome rainbow. Beautiful! She instantly grabbed her camera and snapped this photo.

I have also been wanting to do a post about Dayna's backyard. She has been working on it for quite some time now and it is almost complete. She tore up all the grass in the back, had her hubby build her this gazebo for her birthday and had me on the hunt for the numerous Disney characters that she has around the pathway. She is a NUT about anything Disney. You can't really tell, but the seven dwarfs line the path and at the gazebo there is a bird bath that has Tinkerbell sitting on the ledge. The gazebo also has a weather vane on top that is none other than Mickey Mouse. The lights around the roof of the gazebo are even Mickey ears...ha! She loves roses and found some roses that are named after Disney princesses..."fairest one of them all" and some others that I can't remember the names of. That girl is funny. Someday I will have to do a post about her car. I like to call it her Mickey Mobile. She has it decked it in everything Mickey. She even told me once that when she feels sad, she goes to Google Earth and types in the address for Disneyland and "walks" down mainstreet....okay, that is a little over the top. Her purse is has Mickey Mouse on it, her wallet, her phone - Her ring-tones are even Disney songs. When her husband, Peter, calls it starts to sing "Someday My Prince Will Come" - Ha! When I visit her in the next week or so I will have to take pictures of all her Mickey garb. Very entertaining stuff.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

She's Back...For The Weekend

This past Wednesday I received a phone call from a very sad Jenni. She has been extremely homesick and could not take it anymore. She moved to California for the summer to run the office for a company that Cordell is selling for. She is the only girl in this group and is dying from lack of female interaction. She is pretty much by herself 90% of the time and was going crazy. Cordell felt really bad for her and on Thursday announced that she needed to book a flight home (compliments of Cordell) and go see her family and "go do whatever girls do".

So...on Thursday Jenni came home! She is here until Sunday afternoon and has been having a great time since she arrived. I picked her up from the airport and when we arrived back home the first thing she had me do was drive her up to Val's (her best friend since 8th grade). They spent the rest of the day and evening together doing "girly" stuff.

Last night she wanted everyone in the family to come over for dinner. It was really nice having everyone under one roof again...that is everyone except Cordell. Next time! Jenni and Cordell are returning July 16th for a week for Cordell's sister's wedding. I think Jenni should be able to manage a few more weeks of being alone until then. I think this little visit has been very good for her. She came and sat on my bed Thursday night after being with Val and told me "I already miss Cordell and want to go back" Ha! Maybe this trip put everything into perspective :)

Friday, June 4, 2010


This past year our family has certainly seen many changes. As I was thinking about everything that has transpired in the past twelve months, I began to try to think of all the little changes I am seeing around my home due in a large part because of these experiences. I have come to accept that many things in my life, with the exception of family members, are now downsized.

Here is my list of things that have become smaller over the course of twelve months:

1. Food - This has been really hard for me. For the past 2o plus years I have pretty much been cooking for an army sized family. I never had to worry about having leftovers and certainly never looked at an expiration date when purchasing food. I now find myself freezing 1/2 a meal to have at a later date. THAT is something new.

2. Table Size - One night after Christopher and Samantha married, Greg, Josh, Emma and myself were sitting around the table eating dinner. Suddenly I realized that this table is far too big and we were not sitting even close to each other anymore. The next day I had Josh help me remove the two leaves from the table. Those leaves have been in that table since the day we purchased it. Our table looks very tiny now and it seems very strange. I am slowly getting used to it.

3. Stress Level - I cannot believe how much more relaxed I feel. I guess having three children gone from your home will do that for you. We still have Josh and Emma, but let me just say that those two are a snap. Life is soooo calm. It is wonderful. I remember having Christopher and Jenni and thinking that two children were hard - ha! I guess having FIVE put that into perspective.

4. Laundry - I used to spend each day doing at least 2-3 loads of laundry. Now I can do laundry twice a week and be done in a matter of hours. AHHHHHH. I love it! I have never really minded doing the washing and even the folding of laundry. But for some strange reason, putting it away has always been a trial. Now it is a breeze.

5. Traffic Running Through House - This is the first time in about 18 years that I have not had groups of children running through my home at all hours. Sure, we still have kids over, but it is nothing like it was before. My home actually stays clean now...What a novel idea. I used to vacuum everyday, now maybe twice a week.

6. Seats in Sacrament Meeting - This has been kind of hard for me too. I realized a couple of weeks ago that our family can now sit in the smaller side seats in the chapel. WEIRD. We used to take up almost an entire big only a side seat? And while I know that we should probably sit on the sides to save space, I can't do it. Sorry...I still need a big bench. Maybe someday I can downsize that one, but not anytime soon. In the meantime, we are happy to share, but don't ask us to change our spot :)

Thursday, June 3, 2010

I Feel Yucky

Sunday I came down with a nasty little bug. I woke up with a horrible headache (I very seldom get headaches) and felt very weak and dizzy. I stayed in bed pretty much most of the day. In fact, I felt so ill that I laid in my bed all day and watched a twelve hour marathon of Star Wars on TV. No...I am not a Star Wars fan, but somehow I got sucked into that galaxy and could not walk away. The Force was strong. It was a long day, but by the next morning, I felt much better.

However, I can't seem to shake this little bug. Monday I spent the day with the family and went to the movies and had Tara, Austin and Greg's mom over for dinner. By the time we returned from the movie, I was back in bed again. Anyone who knows me realizes that I really do not get sick too often. If I do, it is usually for just a day and then I bounce right back. Not this time. I still feel really yucky.

I tried to get up this morning and head to the temple to work in the flower beds, but by the time I got done getting ready I had to lay down and rest. Not a good sign. The last time I felt like this was about 10 years ago when I was finally diagnosed with pneumonia after six weeks of not feeling good. I hope that is not the case...I have a lot of things I am wanting to get done. Ten years ago when I was at the doctors he told me that people like me with good health usually get really sick about once every ten years and when they do, it knocks them to the floor....great. I guess my turn has come back around. Lets just hope it is not a six week sickness like last time.